10 - skeleton outline

BENJI:

Okay. Let’s get back into it. Let’s do this. Alright. Gotta—hype myself up. Y’know?

Benji is back! That’s me! I’m here! I’m ready to discuss theories, cuz that’s my–my whole deal!

I’m very stressed out right now! If that’s not super clear from my tone and my whole–y’know. Vibes?

So. Moments of Mystery Two, Electric Boogaloo. Or, maybe, Moments of Mystery Two: The Sequel To Moments of Mystery. Who’s to say? Not me! Definitely not me, I have not slept for the past twenty-seven hours, which is kinda interfering with my whole energy. So.

I just drank two five hour energies, speaking of energy. That’s—that’s certainly something. It’s not healthy, but it’s where I’m at today. We are all allowed to have off days. That’s a thing. My off days mean that I’m gonna inhale energy drinks like my life depends on it, so. Boom. I’m the epitome of health. The very paragon of humanity at its finest.

That’s a joke. I promise. I—I’m just having an off week. I let myself have one of those per month, now, and it’s working great. I’m doing great. So great.

Also, I’m keeping a planner now, somehow. Took me long enough? I’m not super into it, but, hey, practice makes perfect, and nobody’s perfect, so. Boom. Yeah!

So. Let’s do a table of contents. Everyone’s favorite thing, I know, but they’re important to me! Please, humor me.

One: Personal updates. In this section, we’ll address how I, personally, am doing. This will hopefully be short.

Two: Recaps and updates on our most recent weird happenings. In this section–well. Self-explanatory. You get it! I get it! We all get it.

Three: Theories. Again, kind of self explanatory.

Four: This is sort of a grab bag, where I’ll throw in some tangents. I don’t know what to title this section. We’ll just call it Untitled and then call it a day, maybe? If I come up with one by then, I’ll clarify.

Five: Sign-off slash conclusion. In this section, I’ll give you a wrap up. Nice and easy. I know it’ll go off the rails, but at least we have a skeleton.

So. Part one. Personal updates. Let’s go. I—I have a quick list, bullet points. I’m very into those lately. All about them.

My life is going okay, I think? I’m–I’ve obviously been very stressed in the past week, but overall, stuff’s going okay! We’re kinda understaffed, which is rough, because people are actually coming in more, now, but, hey, I get it! It’s cool!

Uh. I got a boating licence? For all boat-related needs. I don’t own a boat–I’m not made of money–but I have the option now, y’know? Gotta keep those options out there. If you can’t do everything, what’s the point? I gotta prepare for my whims. Gotta predict what’s next, and, look, I’m unpredictable, so. A walking contradiction, that’s me, like I’m some sort of bad 90s alt-rock lyric. Some sort of manic pixie dream dude. I have the glasses for it and everything. I could pull that off. Make a movie about me, rom-com directors! I’m quirky enough.

And. Final personal update, because rule of threes, because that’s important, and that’s symbolic, and that’s–it’s because I have three personal updates. That’s why, I’m not actually going for three, I–I just have three of ‘em. Very fun.

Uh. That update is that I’m having an off week! I keep mentioning this because I feel like it needs constant reiteration, and also, because my brain is focusing on that thought a lot and I think that if I say it out loud a lot, I’ll stop focusing on it? Which seems counterproductive, but it’s like, uh, listening to a  song that’s stuck in your head with the hope that it’ll get unstuck. Y’know?

But that’s not the fun part of this, my life—that’s not what I’m here to talk about. We’re here for the weird. The wild. The crazy. You get the picture. So. I’m—let’s wrap up part one with a, like. Hope that you guys are all having good weeks? If any of you have a boat, which I sincerely doubt you do, I can drive it now, but I don’t think that I should do it this week. Because—you know. Yeah.

So. Let’s get into part two: Weird stuff. Hell yeah.

Teresa’s thing: Still weird. Still very weird. We all know this. Again, reiterating for effect.

But—we’ve been seeing more and more sort of—not-from-this-universe people. Not entire ones. We still haven’t had any more successes, as far as I know? But—that’s why we have a lot of new customers! Because Mae is—telling them that I’m relatively chill? Which is cool, except for that, again, we’re understaffed. So—

It’s weird. Cuz I have to, uh, give recommendations to folks who can’t really communicate, always, and who can’t really express anything with their faces, because their faces are kind of obscured, but, look, I’ve gotten really good at listening comprehension now, so, uh, take that, ERBs. Take that, fourth grade teachers with bizarre reward-punishment systems that really didn’t help at all and kind of encouraged bullying?

I know that Charlotte was very dismissive of this, but I am curious about the nature of doubles between universes. Because there isn’t one of me, unlike the rest of you. That’s—we know that Teresa’s double is also very determined, very resilient, and very into bad comedy. We know that Elaine’s double is also new in town, though we don’t know much about her, and we know that Charlotte’s double is intimidating, which, no comment. I am not, personally, intimidated by Our-Charlotte, but, uh. Maybe that’s also an also? Who’s to say? Again, not me! We don’t know much about Other-AJ or Other-Robin or Other-Angie other than that Other-Angie did not go to Harvard at all, and instead started at Lands?

Tongue twister, there. So much usage of the word other, way-too-much. We need a better word. A noun, maybe, rather than an adjective, or maybe a word that functions as both? Like orange. Or, uh classic, or static, or, or, or.

Again. You get the picture. You—you guys get what I’m saying.

It feels weird, knowing what’s next. There’s not much to do with that knowing other than to know it. Which is annoying, y’know? It’s just—it’s. Surreal, to have this knowledge that’s so strange.

Which leads me into part three: Theories! Everyone’s favorite part of this maybe, my favorite part of this definitely.

Re: doubles—I think it’s random. Well, not random, but, like—it’s just the way the multiverse crumbles, I guess. Or, not crumbles. But functions. It’s—it’s not breaking down, that’s not what’s going on here. It’s just existing. As is the wont of multiverses. I think that’s their wont, at least. I assume. Maybe I shouldn’t?

We know now that there’s not really a big destiny here. I—I’m putting together pieces that mean nothing because I feel like I have to, yeah? But there are answers to be found.

Time stopped again yesterday. Did any of you notice? Cuz I did. I really did. That should have gone in section two, but I just remembered it now. It’s kinda getting boring, all these things are just—blurring together. They’re underwhelming. Hey, parallel universe, get some better special effects, y’know? Make it flashier. The audience wants saturation, wants intrigue, wants—something more than this. Whatever this is.

If you told me a year ago that I’d find time shenanigans boring—I don’t know. It would’ve been shocking? I would react weird.

Oh! I have something, uh. Related. Something related: I still don’t know why it’s us, though. As much as Mae says it’s not us, it has to be, because—we repeated a day. Nobody else did, but we did. It’s not self-importance, here, it’s fact. If I say, hey, have you ever time-looped, to a person, they look at me like I’m batshit. And you notice these things. You notice them—because you miss work, or because you miss class, or because you miss your doctor’s appointment—the rest of the world did the exact same as they did, but we—we went through a day twice, differently.

It’s not coincidence. It’s—something.

The time loop happened before we met Mae. Before we started talking about what happened, before there was a record, other than Teresa’s journals, which she won’t let any of us read.

It’s something. I don’t know what it is, but it’s something. That’s gotta have some significance in this, right?

So. What else do I have to say? Uh. Okay. I—

I don’t know. I guess—I’ll just continue? Because I think that my point needs further elaboration. More—detail. More intrigue. I am all about intrigue. If there’s no intrigue, there’s no point, right? Right. Flash is important, in the long run. Gotta make an impact, gotta make a statement, or else, you’re insignificant to history. Well. Not insignificant. Plenty of quiet people are significant. But—Look. Listen.

I misspoke. I mean—

There’s no such thing as insignificance, I don’t think? Because—ripple effect. Step on a butterfly. Right? Every action is important re: the fate of the universe and humanity and also everything else, but I feel like that’s implied already, so. So, like, we already had to be significant to this. But we never got that Why Us answer, and I don’t even know how to expand the question further than just those two words, Why Us.

It’s not the existential Why Us, either it’s the very literal Why Us that I’m asking, but it’s just—

I want that answer. I care about that answer. I need to know! We all need to know—I don’t care if it’s cosmic necessity or wrong place right time or right place wrong time or whatever, I care about knowing. I’m a big fan of knowing. Really big fan of it. I’m just—overwhelmed by normal life, underwhelmed by mystery-hunting life, and I want the vice-versa. Yeah? Yeah. Want to drown in the cool shit and breathe in the boring shit. That’s my whole thing. My whole deal. That’s balance, that place between drowning and hyperventilation. But I wanna tilt the scales a bit toward drowning, cuz I’m an adrenaline junkie.

And I—I think I’m entitled to know it. We’re all entitled to know it; it’s something about us that we’re missing. Something that we’re not asking for whatever reason. We gotta dig deeper. Gotta figure out our role, and then we gotta play it. Method act. You know?

You know.

So. That’s—this isn’t really a grab bag, but I’m too all over the place to come up with a better title, so.

So. How do I even end this? I—I don’t have bullet points for this part. I really don’t. I should’ve written them down as I went along with, uh, stuff that I needed to get back to, but I didn’t, and I gotta reconsider that for the future, but. Hey, nobody’s perfect. I’m certainly not. Again, off day. Off off off day. My brain is in eight-nine different places right now. Some of it’s on Mars, I think. I think about Mars a lot, but that’s not what I’m getting at.

We have to keep asking questions. I’m not a leader by any means—you guys can’t really be led regardless of who’s in charge. I can’t be led, I can’t lead. We’re a pretty chaotic group, and I love that. I love this dynamic a lot. It’s good. It works, for all the ways it shouldn’t.

But—we have to. We need to drive ourselves to understand. That’s—that’s bad wording, but you know what I mean. You don’t need total clarity to get my gist.

Time stopped again this morning. And it stopped last night, and it’ll stop again soon, and again, and again, and again, and again—

We’re background players, but so’s everyone, in the context of every story. Why don’t we try and change that? Something else is clearly trying to make us more important. I think that whatever that something is has a point.

So. Boom. I guess. There’s my conclusion. There’s my big fancy bow on top of the box, the—the point. My whole damn gist.

I don’t have a good sign off. I wish that we could have one, though, that would be—very fun. But, again, chaotic group, works for all the ways it shouldn’t. Can’t be consistent. Gotta surprise each other constantly. That’s—that’s good.

So let’s use that dynamic for all of its power and solve this mystery. These mysteries. These—everythings.

So. Um.

Yes. That’s my last thought. I’m gonna cut this off. Cool! Gonna go try and get this stress out somehow. Not sure how. Maybe run? I hate running, but it’ll help, right?

Off topic. Sorry. I’ll talk to you later!